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Doing social media ~ experience the space

Doing social media ~ experience the space | Culture |
Since some time in July  I have been wrangling with the multiple dimensions of social media as they impact on the spaces of information professionals. I chose that word deliberately, because doing...
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Giving Things Away With YOUR Help

Giving Things Away With YOUR Help | Culture |

After a tough week post-chemo I've decided the time to "get my affairs in order" is here. I don't share this to be depressing or sad. I am neither :). I'm tired of being sick (more tired than you can imagine), but I take heart in accomplishing something. Time to start any journey is always NOW.

Here is what we are going to do:

* Create the Story of Cancer trust (my estate will go into the trust).

* Create hybrid 501c3 nonprofit (allows some profits).

* Create a plan to consistently donate $1M to cancer research.  
* Give away my cherished URLs (,

* Give URLs to a 501c3 we believe will be a good partner. 
* Create a Story of Cancer community online. 

* Create the Cure Cancer Store. 
* Help cancer patients by curating information, sharing and becoming a resource.

* Help cancer researchers who aren't researching in the "normal" way (and so fight funding).

* Create a campaign, Save Martin, Save the World, to help Dr. van Deventer, my oncologist raise the $225,000 he needs to continue his research into CLL (my cancer :).

Since there are a lot of moving parts and I want to SEE the before moving on to whatever is next I've set plans in motion yesterday and today.

Here is what will happen next:


I've ask Jon Jordan and Mark Foulkrod, my "bosses" (really my friends) at Atlantic BT ( ) to be the guardians of the trust. We are meeting on Thursday to iron out details.   


There are people who've been contributing resources and love right along who won't be forgotten such as Eric and Cynthia Garrison from ( They will be board members and continue to be trusted resources. Dr. Hank van Deventer will also be invited to be a board member. My brother and sister will be asked to be board members too (other suggestions?). 

Dr. Han van Deventer Pitch August 3
Will be presenting Story of Cancer business plan to Dr. van Deventer about the Story of Cancer trust and the Save Martin, Save the World campaign to Dr. V a week from this Friday (I will share a copy on ScentTrail Marketing). 

Set Appointment To See Karen Cochran at the Duke Cancer Institute
Haven't seen or talked to Karen since joining Atlantic BT (my bad) and Martin's Ride To Cure Cancer ( ), so overdue for a checkin and will make the Story of Cancer pitch.  

Your Help Is Needed 
 If you are reading this and would like to help there are a million ways you can become part of the Story of Cancer "team". Here are a few ideas I have sitting here today:

* Know a good Cancer Support 501c3 we should be talking to?

Please share and we will include your recommendations in our pitch meetings and strategy. A great partner is one who will understand enough about Internet marketing to know of the immense value we are about to grant (in excess of $1M and possibly much, much more and let's hope so since $$$ and loving, hard working people is what will cure cancer).

* Know good board members?

Boards can make or break an effort like this and I only have the one estate (lol), so intelligent, caring board members with experience where we are thin (nonprofit world of donations, grants and Charity Navigator) would be appreciated suggestions. 


Cure Cancer Store and Story of Cancer on Facebook. This is where we will go to ask for ideas, feedback and inspiration.

* Ideation -

This post may sound like I know what I'm doing. I know a little about Internet marketing but forming trusts and 501c3 are areas of absolute ignorance. If you have expertise and would like to help in exchange for little more than our thanks join our Facebook groups and give a shout out to my mobriff(at)gmail email.

* Friendship & Support -

I have great friends! My friends are people I care about and who care about me. There is NO WAY to create anything or become a "cancer survivor" without support from strong friends. Thanks to those who have already saved my life and thanks to those who will continue to do so. You guys rock :) !.

Here is where we are forming the Story of Cancer community now (on Facebook):

Story of Cancer  

Cure Cancer Store 


As always my thanks and love to all. 



I've become friends with Marty since Scoopit's inauguration.

In fact my love for him as a human being grows daily. Marty has used his illness in so many positive ways, always with the intent to help others. 

Please help make Marty's efforts truly memorable and do as much as you can to support these initiatives!

I want to wish you Marty every success, especially with your battle. A true survivor!!!

My love and friendship goes out to you xxx M

Martin (Marty) Smith's comment, July 28, 2012 11:13 PM
Michele you made a hard week worth it :). Thanks. Meeting the other day with my boss didn't light the fire I'd hoped. Life is one pick yourself up off the ground, dust off and get back on the bicycle adventure (lol). Couldn't attempt without support from loving, kind friends like you. Thanks. M
maxOz's comment, July 31, 2012 7:53 AM
Darling if I can bring a smile to your face and a warm feeling inside that you are "loved" and "blessed" them you've made my year!!! xxx M
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What Type of Social Media Personality Are You?

What Type of Social Media Personality Are You? | Culture |
The Myers-Briggs Indicator tests psychological traits per individual. Turns out, your specific indicators inform how you use social media.

In 1921, psychologist Carl Jung changed the fundamentals of his field. By distributing a psychometric test called the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator to patients, Jung claimed he could accurately boil down the psychological types of humans into 16 major categories.

This Infographic is based on data by CPP, publishers of the Myers-Briggs personality assessment, details the qualifiers for each of the test’s characteristics, but furthermore, predicts the psychological types most likely to participate on specific social networks. More extroverts reported using Facebook than introverts, for instance. And people with inclinations toward Feeling spend more time browsing and interacting with people on Facebook, rather than those who tend toward Thinking.


Via Brian Yanish -
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Digital Leader of the Week maxOz

Digital Leader of the Week maxOz | Culture |
Share Ideas that matter...


Marty Note
There are magical people in the world you are meant to know and love. The strange serendipity of life can't prevent the kismet of your eventual connection, connection across a universe of time or half a world of ocean. Michele is one of those magical people.

Her magic is on display daily on the tomes of information she filters, defines and organizes for those who don't have half her energy, for those who NEVER had half her energy (me). Energy is chaos without intelligence and grace. The three legs of Michele's stool perfectly balance each other: creative vision, brilliant insight and a caring empathy placing others first despite the ability to be impatient with slow followers (something maxOz would never be).

I've watched, been included and learned from Michele. I've learned how to see information come running down the plains, distinguish what should be cut out of an increasingly thundering herd and in need of being proclaimed with clear voice and as much empathy as I have (not nearly what one of my mentors has one of her hands). If you wrestle with understanding the swirling roil of this digital revolution the best place to be is following Michele Smorgon. 


** What An Honor, So Kind Marty LOVE X Michele

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5 Curating Secrets From @ScentTrail

5 Curating Secrets From @ScentTrail | Culture |

I have a few curating tricks or secrets I haven't seen widely written or shared. This doesn't mean much better, smarter curators like Michele, Robin or Brian don't know and practice these ideas, but I haven't seen posts on them so decided to share.

Marty's 5 Secret Curation Tips

1. Curate What Is Happening NOW
After last year's Raleigh Internet Summit streaming to the web was all the rage. I tested the idea and sure enough saw a similar pre-event – event -post-event traffic pattern (looks like a tall witches hat of a pointed bell curve). If something is moving one sure way to elongate the social media half life, the time when half the traffic the link or post will ever do comes in, is to call attention to the "Blow Up". Curate what is happening now and amplify the trend.

This idea WILL NOT create a trend. If you say something is blowing up when it is not then you will be disappointed by results and lose credibility so don't overuse this tactic. When something is special and being declared so by the mob share it with the rest of the class.

2. Near Real Time Beats All Other Time
There is a fire hose of data flooding at all times. Pick out news stories that fit your themes and curation and pounce fast. If I see an infographic I go to the source to see how old it is. Old infographics that are supportive of my themes are still valuable just not as valuable as one posted an hour ago with only 10 Tweets and 2 G+ shares. Those brand new, hardly been seen infographics are pure RT, Rescoop and traffic gold.

The reason we include social share data on the page is the same reason the Red Cross has a big thermometer outside their building marketing donation progress. Read BrainFluene By Dooley to learn why such a gauge is so important especially as we humans NEAR our goals.

Social share data helps speed up acceptance and it can help you know how old or exposed a link is or post is. If I walk into a Mashable post with no Tweets or other social shares I may share just becuase I know and trust the source and I'm in early. There are times EARLY trumps RELATED and walking in as the 3rd or 10th reader of a Mashable Post (or some other similar trusted souce) might be one of them. If the post was about Eskimos form Mars or something widely divergent from my core themes I might pass and not use it or I might write a tweet or a quick post on Esikmos from Mars (lol). Knowing me as you do which one do you see as more likely (#2 being the correct answer :).

3. Infographics Rock Traffic
When in doubt scoop or Retweet an infographic. If it feels like we are awash in infographics it is because we are, but we are because they work. Infographics tell a story with pictures and represent the larger "visual movement" I discussed yesterday in Visuals crushing Textuals ( ). Find great curators of infographics such as my friend Michele (@maxOz  ) and follow them, learn from them and steal from them (they won't mind :).

4. Create A Leaderboard
The master at this is Gerrit Bes, his Latest Social Media News Scoop is a Huffington Post-like aggregation of what is trending on . The brilliance of Gerrit's creation was immediately apparent when his visitor numbers were below mine but moving fast, very fast. Now Gerrit's vistor numbers are way above mine because for every post I curate or create he has 10 AND each of his posts has built in support system - the places he found them. This is the same dynamic as social contests and games. Putting User Generated Content (UGC) on your site creates the same "support it" knee jerk reaction.

Creating a leaderboard like the one I did last week:  can also breathe new life into your social media with a second or third round. You post to the board as trending from yesterday and those who missed it can catch up. Every visitor Retweet you generate from such a leaderboard is all gravy.

5. Say Thank You
Seems like an easy idea, but so appreciated and meaningful. I work hard sharing and curating and do so for non-monetary reasons (love of the game). I also do so because people have helped me and I want to repay that help. I love curating, and the special friends I've made here. I created a Scoop called Thank You ( )because I was so moved and well supported by the brilliant, special people who didn't know me from a hole in the wall a year ago. When someone does something nice for you that you notice there are 10 more doing good things for you that you missed. Good rule of thumb is always say thanks, always. Second good rule of thumb is BE THANKFUL :).

Thanks everyone here ends my first 5 Marty Curation Secrets (lol).

#A Big Thank You to You Marty for Bringing A Smile to My Day (◕‿◕) xxx

Via Martin (Marty) Smith
Martin (Marty) Smith's comment, July 31, 2012 10:22 PM
Thanks for your amazing work Gerrit. Mentioned you in this post as a brilliant curator. Marty
Martin (Marty) Smith's comment, August 1, 2012 2:06 PM
TY to everyone for picking up this post. Guillaume, thanks to your new beautiful look and feel I am driving a lot more traffic into the master Revolutions page:

Is there anyway to create a "follow all" button? It takes WORK right now to follow all 12 revolutions. I appreciate the placement of the follow @ScentTrail button, but its hierarchy makes it look like it is the equivalent of a Follow All button.

I guess it is sort of since I do tweet updates across all revolutions, but it feels a little piecemeal, confusing and HARD now. Once you bring Twitter in, and I am in NO WAY saying remove it (lol), it gets confused with the magazine. The main issue, a visitor's desire to follow all, is left to those willing to do the click-y work.

Here again I wouldn't eliminate choice I would just find a way to create less friction with a SUPER CHOICE of Follow All. The other reason I see this button as beneficial is what it does for Once your database has me tagged as a FOLLOW ALL on X, Y and Z topics relevant suggestions are just around the corner. Sure you can move downstream from the individual choices but seems like a lot more work. Once you get into predictive analytics you will be able to tune the presentation based on how your visitors arrive and eliminate some choices in favor of higher conversions.

Agree with how you've started, at the lowest detail level, but you've now created a new problem - I want to USE that beautiful visual master page more. In order to do that I need it to start to function more like a site (more subscription choices, taxonomy power and grouping as we've discussed).

I still haven't been able to get my hand all the way around what it means to be the HUB of my social network marketing, but working on it. Stay tuned (lol) and thanks for the Rescoop.
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Likes & Dislikes About New UI

Likes & Dislikes About New UI | Culture | is a favorite curation tool. It has rapidly become my social media hub, the place I organize the rest of my social media curation. This week changed their UI and won some important battles and lost a few. Here is a recap:


* UI - The new User Interface is more visual and engaging another example of visuals beating textuals and well done.

* Presentation Layer - The magazine format didn't change so what the customer of your curation sees remains the same also well done since changes there could rock the boat.

* SEO Layer - has real SEO strength. I've owned absolute #1 on Curation Revolution for over a year and you thankfully haven't changed anything there (that I can see on a quick pass). Kudos to understanding SEO as well as you do! The SEO advantage of a platform is lost on many, many are selfish about its benefits (FB and Twitter) and you aren't either SEO Stupid or selfish. KUDOS!

* Tool Layout - The functional layout of tools such as the Rescoop button is better, more clear and more visual. Harder now to get one button confused with another.

Overall I would say the behind the curtain admin experience improved with these changes.


* Trending Topics - No Visitor Counts On My Profile Anymore

Thought this was resolved, but it is not. The number is aggregate and what we need, and used to have, is today's visitor numbers by topic. That number helps manage across the 10 different topics I curate. Without knowing what is trending I might step on my own curation or not know when something is a laggard and I need to move on. Wish you would bring back the Today visitor count.

* Leaderboard - Don't See My Curator Set Anymore, Those With Visitor Numbers Around Me

One of the most motivating things was to see my immediate curation set, curators above and below my current viewer numbers. When you first launched I could see the top of the stack and that was DEMOTIVATING. Seeing how many visitors Robin or Michele have before I woke up can be intimidating and made my curation efforts feel small. I know that is goofystupid, but the human mind works in strange ways espcially regarding numbers. I used the leaderboard as a form of feedback loop too. If my day was down in viewers I checked to see if others in my set were down too. Sometimes the answer to that question was yes such as on a holiday weekend and sometimes I was lagging behind and needed to get going. I thought one of the most intelligent gamification move was showing me the views of the curators above and below as that helped motivate me to get moving without a sense of intimidation or the futility of it all. Removing that feedback has us back to the same place as when you started since My Community now shows the top of the stack (not where I am by far) and so it feels like the community is for uber-curators like Robin and Michele and not the little guys (like me LOL). Hope you can bring back one of the most intelligent leaderboards I've ever seen.

The fact this post is weighted toward losers is only because it takes more explanation to cover dislikes NOT because the new UI is more negative than positive. The new UI is net positive for sure, but the real time analytics and leaderboard encouragement have been harmed. Hope you can build back since my curation will be less effective and less motivated.


Via Martin (Marty) Smith
Martin (Marty) Smith's comment, July 19, 2012 9:03 PM
FYI, I just did something I've never done before - I drove a link into my profile page because it is a thing of magazine-like beauty. Figuring out how to get what I wanted in the window took a little figuring (largest image), but now I have it tuned AND I'm changing several aspects of my curation to support your new UI including:

* Shorter headlines as shorter works better in that space below the image (they work better anyway so your new UI helps do the right thing.
* Better visuals and in that 400 x 200 range. At first I was having trouble getting the image positioned where I wanted. Kept testing and found the sweet spot.
* Changed my titles to create an umbrella since now that I can see my sections like a magazine it makes sense to treat each section like a subsection of a larger idea (in my case Revolution).

Two things I wish I could do:

* Wish I could move boxes or create a more clear hierarchy by changing the size of 2 to 4 boxes. When everything is equal in size and the default order is yours then I can't react to the feedback loops I'm getting. This slows down my thinking of my Profile as the master magazine and the subsections, the revolutions, as pliable blocks capable of responding to what I see and what the community tells me. Today I had Mobile Revolution blow up. If I could have moved it to top left I would have pushed traffic to the profile in the hopes of helping it blow up bigger (lol).

* I tied two scoops about Facebook together today by physically moving them. Problem is that doesn't last past the next update. These two scoops form an A and B version of an "article" and need to move together across time. Curation will split them and I have to use tags to pull them back together and I haven't figured out how to use the tags yet (though I suspect there is real power in there). This ability to tie scoops together into linked groups kind of like you can do with a PowerPoint presentation or with a graphics program would help create the threads within the subsections such as:

* Apple or Android within Mobile Revolution.
* Storytelling within Curation Revolution.

These threads form the magazine within the magazine and may, at some point, earn their way out of the subsection to become a section of their own. I would use analytics to know when such a move would increase reach not split it into too many disparate pieces.

Great job with bringing back our beloved features and with this new UI. The benefits are amazing and we are just getting started. Thanks for fixing the issues with your CDN too (those can be a pain, been there, done that). Marty
Guillaume Decugis's comment, July 23, 2012 5:33 PM
Hi Marty. Thanks for the update on the post and the details on how you're using the new UI. I love the fact you're kind of "hacking" it to create additional meaning :-) Great food for thoughts for the team. I'm getting the first suggestion but the second one is unclear to me. Couldn't you do that by linking one post to the other using the permalink?
Martin (Marty) Smith's comment, July 24, 2012 12:56 AM
Instead of setting the world record for words in a comment box I posted my thoughts to ScentTrail Marketing: .

I got into some things I've been thinking about HARD since your new UI. As a Ecommerce Director I always had trouble creating smooth transitions between content and commerce. Facebook is having much the same issue. I think's magazine approach could bridge the commerce / content Rubicon. Shared those thoughts as best as I could this late. Hope they help use see a piece of what I see since ye who solves this particular problem and makes it easy for content and commerce to play together stands to make a few bucks (lol). Night, Marty
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I Have Terrible News: Value Of Communication In Honesty

I Have Terrible News: Value Of Communication In Honesty | Culture |

When CEOs describe  what they want most in people they hire, they  consistently talk about honesty and integrity.  Among the leadership competencies that we measure, honesty and integrity have consistently received high scores, putting them at the first or second position in comparison to everything else.

One of the fundamental principles of good leadership is the willingness to treat others with respect. Our ability and courage to speak honestly with one another is most certainly at the heart of treating one another with respect. Indeed our research on this leadership quality of integrity paints an interesting picture. We found that leaders who received high scores on honesty and integrity also received high scores on the following five behaviors 

1) Approachable
2) Acted with humility
3) Listened with great intensity
4) Made decisions carefully
5) Acted assertively

The first four of these portray someone who treats others with great respect.

The final item, acting assertively is the engine that in large part drives integrity


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The Evolution Of Business Cards

The Evolution Of Business Cards | Culture |

This Infographic by Moo, looks at the evolution of Business Cards – from their origins in 15th Century Japan right through to the modern day developments in card stock and printing techniques.

In 2007, the business card industry was a 12 billion dollar industry.

Since the 19th century business cards have been passed out as a form of communication and marketing and is still growing today.

Business cards now are more than a name and number. Personal Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn accounts are present on a good majority of business cards today.

Many young professionals think having an innovative business card design is pivotal to gaining important people’s attention. Like using metal or plastic for their cards instead of paper.

The innovative progression of business cards will continue as long as society keeps looking at them as a form of entertainment as well as a marketing tool. 

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Intelligence Is Overrated: What You Really Need To Succeed

Intelligence Is Overrated: What You Really Need To Succeed | Culture |
Albert Einstein’s was estimated at 160, Madonna’s is 140, and John F. Kennedy’s was only 119, but as it turns out, your IQ score pales in comparison with your EQ, MQ, and BQ scores when it comes to predicting your success and professional achievement.

Research carried out by the Carnegie Institute of Technology shows that 85% of your financial success is due to skills in “human engineering,” your personality and ability to communicate, negotiate, and lead. Shockingly, only 15% is due to technical knowledge.

Additionally, Nobel Prize winning Israeli-American psychologist, Daniel Kahneman, found that people would rather do business with a person they like and trust rather than someone they don’t, even if the likeable person is offering a lower quality product or service at a higher price.

With this in mind, instead of exclusively focusing on your conventional intelligence quotient, you should make an investment in strengthening your EQ (Emotional Intelligence), MQ (Moral Intelligence), and BQ (Body Intelligence).

These concepts may be elusive and difficult to measure, but their significance is far greater than IQ.

If you can master the complexities of these unique and often under-rated forms of intelligence, research tells us you will achieve greater success and be regarded as more professionally competent and capable.

Original Article Here

By Keld Jensen -; an expert on trust, negotiation, leadership, and communication. 

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4 Tips For Becoming A Better Influencer

4 Tips For Becoming A Better Influencer | Culture |

Here are some key factors that make a good influencer

  • Building a strong relationship and trust with your peers is essential in influencing their decisions.
  • Having a team centric attitude towards those that you work with (no man is an island).
  • Presenting an attitude that says “I’m lucky to be here” vs. “the company is lucky to have me”.
There are many benefits to being an influential member of a team including flexibility, trust, decision making power, and proof of ability just to mention a few.
#1 Listen More Talk Less
#2 Give Before You Get
#3 Work Outside Your Comfort Zone
#4 Suggest Collaboration
Do you thinking working towards influencing your team members is a self serving strategy, or will it help the greater good?

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The Story Of Your Life As A Work of Art

The Story Of Your Life As A Work of Art | Culture |

"I see that life can very much be lived as a form of art. We can each choose to become multidimensional, a unique creative expression, a story of elegance, beauty and grace. The cultivating force is love"


This is one of those gems that don't come along very often. It is moving, written with grace and certainly has something that will connect with anyone who reads this, it's about the story of your life.


Here are some highlights:


**Life is simple

That is the beauty of it. Narratives define the relevance of antagonistic complexity and the centrality of that which is beautifully simple to us, that which in our universe has become tame to us


**Have a narrative for every discipline you care about


**every person that you care about 


**every part of your body 


**every part of yourself


**every idea you bring into this world


**imagine the world as it would be without your presence


**then imagine if you had infinite love and finite time. Identify an infinite variety of possible quests that relate to the narrative of each 


**define your diversification strategy so that you seek returns of the right forms of meaning for who you are and who you wish to become


**review the top pages of that list prioritized by feasibility and your own constraints


**Redesign iteratively until the parts of yourself symphonically agree that having a specific implication in your world would be an act of art worthy of the identity you would wish to gift yourself.


**Leave everything you care about better off to the degree to which it is in your life as a matter of art the grace of only being traceable by our love and not by the degree to which we are a burden to our world


**Be visible only in the love we create in our world so that when we look in the mirror if we see what the world sees then all we will see is love


This piece was written by Venessa Miemis  - for her blog.


Selected by Jan Gordon covering "Storytelling, Social Media and Beyond"


Read full article here: [ ]


Thank You Jan this is beautiful [as you are]!

Via janlgordon
Ariana Amorim's comment, March 12, 2013 5:58 PM
Yes, it is Carol. Thank you for sharing it!
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China Critic Ai Weiwei On How The Web Will Bring Freedom And Why China Can’t Design An iPhone

China Critic Ai Weiwei On How The Web Will Bring Freedom And Why China Can’t Design An iPhone | Culture |

It's easy to forget that Ai Weiwei - -is an artist, at times.

The man who is so often (and rightly) described as 'outspoken' and a 'dissident' is one of the most vocal critics of the Chinese regime, particularly on the subject of Internet censorship, to the point that it tends to overshadow his work.

“[China] blocks major internet platforms – such as Twitter and Facebook – because it is afraid of free discussion,” Ai says. “And it deletes information. The government computer has one button: delete.”

Ai compares China’s Web effort to the construction of a dam 

China may seem quite successful in its controls, but it has only raised the water level. It’s like building a dam: it thinks there is more water so it will build it higher. But every drop of water is still in there. It doesn’t understand how to let the pressure out. It builds up a way to maintain control and push the problem to the next generation.

Ultimately, he believes, this approach will see the Internet and freedom “win” in the communist country:

It still hasn’t come to the moment that [the regime] will collapse. That makes a lot of other states admire its technology and methods. But in the long run, its leaders must understand it’s not possible for them to control the internet unless they shut it off – and they can’t live with the consequences of that. The internet is uncontrollable. And if the internet is uncontrollable, freedom will win. It’s as simple as that.

It remains to be seen how his latest article will be received by authorities in China and whether there will be further punishment dealt out to Ai Weiwei for his criticisms.

The full opinion article is most definitely worth reading, you can find it here.  

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The Best Marilyn Monroe Quotes And Sayings

The Best Marilyn Monroe Quotes And Sayings | Culture |
Ah, Marilyn Monroe. One of the most beautiful women to ever grace the big screen - or the world, for that matter.

Marilyn Monroe quotes range from the funny to the insightful to the, well, sad.

If you're a huge fan and want to check out more on Marilyn, take a look at this great list of Marilyn Monroe interviews - - for more insights on one of America's greatest celebrities of all time or even check out all of the lucky guys on the Marilyn Monroe lovers list -

My Choice: #25 "Not An Angel 

"I am good, but not an angel. I do sin, but I am not the devil. I am just a small girl in a big world"

What's Your Favoorite? Let me know

A great example by Laurie M - - of Curation at its best

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5 Companies Working Hard to Change the World

5 Companies Working Hard to Change the World | Culture |

Mashable's new series, The World At Work  - - highlights the people, projects and startups that are driving innovation and making the world a better place.

Using the power of digital, these five companies have empowered citizens in need, rewarded innovation and created uniquely shareable tools that are key in affecting real change.

Although they range in issues from education to sustainability, the one thing that all of these companies have in common is the drive and passion of those at the helm.

1. Kaggle 

hosts contests for data scientists

2. Recyclebank - 

gives the planet a rewards system using gamification techniques

3. Pencils of Promise [POP] -

by adopting the pencil, both symbolically and literally, POP builds schools and educates children in developing countries

4. Wefunder - 

provides a platform that allows startups to hold fundraising with a crowd of investors

5. Reward Volunteers - 

an app for volunteers to log time, share what they’re doing and earn rewards for themselves and the organizations they serve

Check out all these stories - 

By Lauren Hockenson - 

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Why? | Culture |


Why ask why?

Why not?

Why make excuses?

Why ignore what it is that will help you stop making excuses?

Why stay where your dreams are suffocated?

Why would you settle for less than anything than you believe in?

Why be unhappy when you could be appreciated for what makes you…you?

Well, because it’s [seemingly] easier.

But, it’s not who you really are…


It takes courage to follow your dreams, courage most cannot find, but that’s why you are YOU and others are not.


By Brian Solis.


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Australia's Socialympics

Australia's Socialympics | Culture |

It’s been said that it was the ‘Socialympics” – the first time that social media truly infiltrated, supported, interrupted and facilitated conversation around the Olympic Games.

Social media played such a major role in the Olympics that the IOC brought out guidelines to inform athletes what they could and couldn’t do on social media platforms such as Twitter.

Throughout the games, there were more than 500,000 conversations in Australia alone during the Olympics, and Twitter estimates that there were around 80,000 conversations a minute about the Games. Both athletes and journalists alike had their social media accounts suspended for breaching either the IOC or Twitter guidelines. One athlete even blamed social media for their underwhelming performance.

In light of this, B-M Australia has developed the attached Infographic, which visualises the conversations had by Australians during the Olympic games. The Infographic shows the most discussed Australian athletes and news stories and breaks down the demographic data to show who talked the most.

Key insights from the Infographic include:

#1. 4 in every 5 conversations around the Games took place on Twitter, dwarfing every other social media platform
#2. Females talked about Olympics more than men, with 56% of the conversations coming from women
#3. Sally Pearson was Australia’s most talked about athlete, followed by Lauren Jackson and James Magnussen
#4. The most widely discussed news story was that Paul McCartney was paid just 1 pound to perform at the Opening Ceremony
#5. Swimming was the most discussed sport overall, followed by basketball and rowing


By B-M Australia.


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The Weakness Of Positive Thinking

The Weakness Of Positive Thinking | Culture |

"When an upbeat management style becomes excessive, it wards off reality and asks for trouble."


Is there such a thing as too much positive leadership?


According to this paper, which finds that a blind allegiance to organizational optimism lies at the heart of many of the financial miscalculations that drove the Great Recession. Countering the widely held view that positive thinking by leaders invariably challenges and inspires subordinates, the author coins the term “Prozac Leadership” to describe how optimism tends to resemble a well-intended but addictive drug: It promotes artificial happiness and discourages critical reflection, leaving companies ill equipped to deal with setbacks.


Drawing on an analysis of nearly 200 studies of leadership, positive thinking, and organizational dynamics, the author acknowledges that the ability of supervisors to be persuasive is a key skill, and that optimism is one of the most effective communication methods. In fact, leaders’ positive narratives and vision can be transformational, improving innovation and teamwork, especially when employees are part of the strategic dialogue and trust their bosses.


But several recent studies have critiqued the positive thinking movement, highlighting the negative personal and organizational effects that can result from “excessive optimism,” “irrational exuberance,” “gambling against the odds,” and the “tyranny of positive thinking.” In short, Prozac leaders can wind up believing their own narrative that everything is going well. As a consequence, they ask fewer and fewer questions and become deaf to feedback that is “off message,” leaving them, and their companies, dangerously insulated from economic and social realities.


Indeed, leaders’ upbeat perspectives are not always accepted or internalized by their followers, the author says, and Prozac leadership can generate a wide range of responses and types of dissent. In addition to outright whistle-blowing or quitting in protest, disenchanted employees can engage in less overt subversions such as absenteeism and foot-dragging, studies have shown, or simply be at odds with the dominant workplace culture, creating tension.


Of course, customers can also react negatively to hollow corporate promises, the author says, citing the case of a musician whose guitar was severely damaged in transit by a major airline that touted its customer service. After failing for nine months to convince the airline of its responsibility, the musician recorded a song about the incident that went viral on YouTube and became a public relations nightmare for the carrier.


Shareholders, too, can express resistance to Prozac leadership. A 2011 Study found that executives’ use of overly optimistic statements (especially in relation to corporate earnings) increased the firm’s risk of being sued by shareholders. In analyzing 165 lawsuits from 2003 to 2008, the Study found that the statements of sued companies were markedly more optimistic than those of similar firms that weren’t sued. In 91% of the cases, plaintiffs targeted optimistic language when bringing actions against a firm.

“Regardless of whether Prozac leadership is fuelled by wishful thinking, naivety, hubris or more deliberately manipulative motives (or a combination of these),” the author writes, “subordinates can perceive Prozac leaders to be contradictory, remote and unwilling to consult, and may dismiss their excessive optimism as insincere and manipulative.”

Bottom Line:
Leaders can become excessively positive, making them reluctant to listen to alternative viewpoints and leaving their firms unprepared to deal with unexpected problems. This so-called Prozac Leadership ultimately results in resistance from employees, customers, and shareholders.


By strategy+business



Title: Prozac Leadership and the Limits of Positive Thinking  [PDF]

Author: David Collinson (Lancaster University Management School)

Publisher: Leadership, vol. 8, no. 2

Date Published: May 2012

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It Takes Empathy

It Takes Empathy | Culture |

"In a world where we’re taught the importance of monitoring and measuring sentiment with the new tools before us, we miss the essential ingredient to meaningful relationshipsempathy.

Once you listen, not monitor, but truly listen to customer activity and observe online behavior, you cannot help but feel both empathy and harmony. And naturally, the response it begets is only human."

By Brian Solis 


Peter Francis's curator insight, May 10, 2013 8:42 PM

Great statement 

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An Insider’s View Of Building Business In China

An Insider’s View Of Building Business In China | Culture |

Australia’s business relationship with China is back in the headlines.

However, companies are having trouble taping into the Chinese market.
Dr Mona Chung [ born in Beijing where she took her undergraduate degree in international trade. She now lectures in International Business at Deakin University as well as sitting on the executive board of the Victoria branch of the Australia China Business Council] says the general relationship between our countries is very strong; and she would know.

#The biggest obstacle we face to a healthy business relationship is a lack of understanding about each other and 

#Australian businesses tend to ignore the cultural differences, which can cause problems for us. Many of the businesses that go to China don’t understand the cultural differences or the way the Chinese do business, and so they don’t succeed and a lot of resources are wasted.

#The Chinese won’t do business unless they’ve established a relationship ["guanxi"] with you. It’s extremely serious in China. They have to think of you as family, and that can take two years at minimum

#Building a business relationship is different in China than it is in Australia. There’s lots of eating and drinking.

#Going to China and eating with the Chinese is an important part of relationship building. The history of [eating and trading] goes back two or three thousand years,” Chung says.

The major difference between Australian and Chinese businesspeople is their alternative models of thinking.

The Western thinking model, or the "linear model" looks at one particular point or goal and charts the course to get there step by step.

Chinese thinking is the “star model", dealing with four or five things at one time.

A couple of simple things that executives can do to prepare themselves for doing business with China

#Getting to know the people you’re going to meet is vital to a successful business relationship.

#Knowing people’s background and connections is when you find out about their capacities.

Most companies don’t do enough homework.

Before they jump on the plane, they need to study the markets and the people they’ll be dealing with and this sentiment is also applicable to other Western nations


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Information Liberation: Your Guide to the International Web

Information Liberation: Your Guide to the International Web | Culture |
The world wide web is supposed to be just that: world wide.

Sometimes it simply isn’t, however:

This Guide, by author Jim Rion,  is a must-have for anyone looking for access to the complete Internet. 

This complete guide to the International web will show you 

**Which governments around the world restrict Internet access
**Whether its ethical to bypass such restrictions, and which tools to use
**Encrypting your web browsing and email for secure communications
**How to find Internet access while traveling by knowing where to look
**Buying a computer while abroad: an ex-pat’s guide
**Setting up your computer to display non-alphabetic languages
**Getting the most out of translation tools
**Accessing media blocked in your country using VPN and more

Download Guide [PDF] Here 

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Baidu International Launches In Australia To Help Local Companies Tap Into China’s Web Potential

Baidu International Launches In Australia To Help Local Companies Tap Into China’s Web Potential | Culture |

Baidu International, the joint advertising venture between Chinese Internet giant Baidu - - and China Search International, has expanded its pan-Asia presence into Australia this week, offering consultancy for brands keen to advertise on Baidu’s system.

The move is aimed at helping Australian brands gain a foothold in China’s lucrative market:

"Over 175 million Chinese users have already made purchases online.

Increasingly, it is Western goods and services that are benefiting from this maturing community. With the proximity to Australia, and the desire for these goods and services, Australian firms are ideally placed to benefit from the market growth and internationalisation of China."

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Sharing And Communication: Through The Ages #Infographic

Sharing And Communication: Through The Ages #Infographic | Culture |

Almost all species have some sort of communication system. However, successful communication is the trait that has made humans the most successful species.

Moo’s Infographic -  - shows how communication has evolved over time.

It’s hard to imagine communication long before the hustle and bustle of email and text messaging. Technological communication has grown exponentially, leaving snail mail to be a thing of the past.

Facebook and Twitter is the most popular form of communication right now. These social giants are changing the game of communication.  

Social media has taken the complexity out of communication, it is no longer organic, but short and to the point.

Today’s style of communication represents the direction society a technology is headed, towards a more efficient form of communication

maxOz's comment, May 4, 2012 7:14 AM
Thanks Sabina for Shaing
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New Media And Old: Using Social Media And Radio To Build Peace In Pakistan And Afghanistan

New Media And Old: Using Social Media And Radio To Build Peace In Pakistan And Afghanistan | Culture |

USIP's Theo Dolan and Michael Dwyer recently returned from Afghanistan and Pakistan, where they are looking at ways to harness the power of social media to prevent or reduce violence and how to use a new radio program to educate rural Afghans on "rule of law concepts in attempt to strengthen security in those areas.

Dolan is senior program officer for USIP's Center of Innovation for Media, Conflict and Peacebuilding. Dwyer is a senior program officer for the COI.

Read the Interview here 

maxOz's comment, April 28, 2012 6:39 PM
Thanks Marin for sharing
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A Demographic Breakdown Of The World Of Religion

A Demographic Breakdown Of The World Of Religion | Culture |
With the "world's largest" gathering of atheists this weekend in Washington, D.C., the National Post's graphics department takes a look at how the world's religions break down.

There is no escaping religion. It has enormous societal, cultural, political and historical implications.

It has been blamed for wars and praised for bringing people together. But it is practised in some form across the world by billions of people everyday.

So what are the world's major believing and non-believing constituencies?

Richard Johnson -  - coveys in this Infographic that these are estimates of the world religions based on the best data available.

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The Chinese Take On Pinterest

The Chinese Take On Pinterest | Culture |

New Chinese social media sites have long been inspired by popular sites and trends from the West, such as Facebook’s distant cousin Renren and Twitter’s brother Sina Weibo.

It is no surprise then that they have embraced Pinterest with both arms.

Rather than just creating direct clones of the site, they have been inspired by the image-heavy, ‘waterfall-like’ layout (the Chinese describe the dynamic grid as ‘Pubuliu’, meaning ‘waterfall stream’), creating new sites that use this layout but add different features or use it in different ways to Pinterest.

Jon Stokes - - has found over 30 Chinese Pinterest variants (and the number is growing).

What does this mean to brands interested in China?

And should you secure your brand name on China’s Twitter, Sina Weibo 

It is still early stages to decide which of the few Chinese Pinterest variants are here to stay, but we know that to copy like for like will not be sustainable.

Here are a selection of the most interesting ones [pdf]

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Google’s Art Project Grows Larger With 151 Museums Online Across 40 Countries

Google’s Art Project Grows Larger With 151 Museums Online Across 40 Countries | Culture |

Google has announced that Google Art Project  - , where art lovers, students and armchair travellers can explore the visually creative world, has seen a major expansion.

Now culture fans will be able to explore sculpture, street art and photographs from 151 Museums - in 40 Countries  -

A deeper appreciation

Using completely new tools, called Explore and Discover, you can find artworks by period, artist or type of artwork, displaying works from different museums around the world.

Google+ and Hangouts are integrated on the site, so that users can create personal galleries and an enhanced ‘My Gallery’ feature allows visitors to select any of the 30,000 artworks—along with favourite details to build a very personalised experience.

Up close and personal

The Google Art Project now has 46 artworks available with “gigapixel” photo capturing technology, photographed in extraordinary detail using super high resolution.

Though purists will still want to seek out the atmosphere and smells of a location in which to enjoy their art experience, the Art Project is simple-to-use and fascinating to explore, not just for the works themselves, but also the unique way in which they have been presented.


By Jamillah Knowles - 

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